Something of interest came up in our household the other day, something that you may already be aware of. This family learned, for the first time, about the Thundershirt. Maybe you’ve heard of these?
Thundershirts are tight little tees for your pup, the idea being that gentle pressure on the canine bod will sooth any jangled nerves he/she may be experiencing due to, say, a passing thunderstorm.
And being a canine household, as well as a person who is always fascinated by infomercials and their associated products, Thundershirts got me thinking.
I started thinking that maybe it would be nice to have Thundershirts for more than just dogs.
Like, wouldn’t it be nice to have Thundershirts for husbands?
I don’t have any children yet, but I think that, when I do, I would like to have a kid-sized Thundershirt handy in the case of any emergency tantrums.
I would like to have our presidential candidates wear Thundershirts during their debates. And I would request that Thundershirts be made available to Real Housewives across the land.
Seriously, Thundershirts are looking more and more like the solution to so many problems!
I personally think that A. would especially appreciate having a wife-shaped Thundershirt on hand: one of M.’s programs is preempted – strap on the Thundershirt; Target runs out of M.’s favorite writing implement – have that Thundershirt available; and, of course, dessert is, for whatever reason, not an option tonight – best get out the industrial-strength Thundershirt!
Wouldn’t it be nice to self-sooth while you’re doing just about anything else? Thundershirts could be like Spanx – you’re calm, cool and collected and no one needs to know your secret. So much less messy than so many other stress-reduction measures.
But, you know, I’ve looked around online. I’ve stayed up until 2 a.m. surfing the infomercial-laden channels. I’ve scoured the ‘As Seen On TV’ section of my local stores. And I have yet to find a Thundershirt for non-canine types.
Snack cake will have to serve as my current Thundershirt stand-in.
I love snack cake because it’s so simple to prepare. I love snack cakes because they’re small and result in much less leftovers and much less guilt for a small household such as my own. And I love snack cakes because, when prepared correctly, they’re moist, they’re flavorful, and they are perfect for, well, a snack.
So if you see a Thundershirt that you think might fit, please let me know. Otherwise, let’s share a piece of Frosted Carrot Ancho Snack Cake in the interim.
Frosted Carrot Ancho Snack Cake
For the cake:
1/2 c. canola oil (vegetable oil or any other light oil may be substituted)
1 large egg
1 c. white sugar, granulated
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 c. buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp. ancho chile, ground
1 c. carrot, peeled, shredded
For the frosting:
1 c. whipped cream cheese
1/2 c. confectioners’ sugar
1/4 c. whole milk
1 1/2 tsp. canela, ground (ground cinnamon may be substituted)
To prepare the cake, preheat the oven to 350°.
Beat the sugar, oil and egg together in a large bowl. Beat in the flour, salt, baking powder, ancho chile, and then buttermilk, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary and beating just until you have a uniform batter. Fold in the carrot. Pour the finished batter into an 8″ x 8″ square baking pan lined with parchment paper and bake for just 35 minutes. This cake is quite dense and, if you test at 35 minutes with a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake, some crumbs may still stick. The finished cake will be puffed across the top and dark brown at the edges, which should be pulling away from the sides of the pan. Remove and set aside to cool before unmolding.
Meanwhile, to prepare the frosting, place all of the ingredients in a large bowl and begin by beating on a low speed just to combine. Once combined, increase the speed of your mixer to high and beat for several minutes to whip the frosting to a light, airy consistency. Unmold your cake and frost generously. Note that snack cakes are meant to be extremely casual in my mind: I tend to plop the frosting right onto the top of the cake and spread it out so that it simply spills over the sides of the cake. If you want to be a little more precise you can carefully spread the frosting over the top and across the sides – there’s more than enough here to cover the entire cake with this recipe.
I usually serve this cake immediately, but you can also store, in the pan and refrigerated for several days before serving.
YIELD: 9 large pieces